Husby A, Gulseth HL, Hovi P, Hansen JV, Pihlström N, Gunnes N, Härkänen T, Dahl J, Karlstad Ø, Heliö T, Køber L, Ljung R, Hviid A
BMJ Med 2 (1) e000373 [2023-02-01; online 2023-02-01]
To investigate the clinical outcomes of myocarditis associated with mRNA vaccines against the SARS-CoV-2 virus compared with other types of myocarditis. Population based cohort study. Nationwide register data from four Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden), from 1 January 2018 to the latest date of follow-up in 2022. The Nordic myocarditis cohort; 7292 individuals aged ≥12 years who had an incident diagnosis of myocarditis as a main or secondary diagnosis, in a population of 23 million individuals in Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. Heart failure, or death from any cause within 90 days of admission to hospital for new onset myocarditis, and hospital readmission within 90 days of discharge to hospital for new onset myocarditis. Clinical outcomes of myocarditis associated with SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination, covid-19 disease, and conventional myocarditis were compared. In 2018-22, 7292 patients were admitted to hospital with new onset myocarditis, with 530 (7.3%) categorised as having myocarditis associated with SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination, 109 (1.5%) with myocarditis associated with covid-19 disease, and 6653 (91.2%) with conventional myocarditis. At the 90 day follow-up, 62, nine, and 988 patients had been readmitted to hospital in each group (vaccination, covid-19, and conventional myocarditis groups, respectively), corresponding to a relative risk of readmission of 0.79 (95% confidence interval 0.62 to 1.00) and 0.55 (0.30 to 1.04) for the vaccination type and covid-19 type myocarditis groups, respectively, compared with the conventional myocarditis group. At the 90 day follow-up, 27, 18, and 616 patients had a diagnosis of heart failure or died in the vaccination type, covid-19 type, and conventional myocarditis groups, respectively. The relative risk of heart failure within 90 days was 0.56 (95% confidence interval 0.37 to 0.85) and 1.48 (0.86 to 2.54) for myocarditis associated with vaccination and covid-19 disease, respectively, compared with conventional myocarditis; the relative risk of death was 0.48 (0.21 to 1.09) and 2.35 (1.06 to 5.19), respectively. Among patients aged 12-39 years with no predisposing comorbidities, the relative risk of heart failure or death was markedly higher for myocarditis associated with covid-19 disease than for myocarditis associated with vaccination (relative risk 5.78, 1.84 to 18.20). Compared with myocarditis associated with covid-19 disease and conventional myocarditis, myocarditis after vaccination with SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccines was associated with better clinical outcomes within 90 days of admission to hospital.